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How do laboratory technicians perceive their role in tuberculosis diagnostic process: a cross-sectional study among laboratory technicians in health centers of Central Java Province, Indonesia

Authors Bagoes Widjanarko, Widyastari DA, Martini M, Ginanjar P

Received 14 March 2016

Accepted for publication 25 May 2016

Published 6 September 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 237—246


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Igor Elman

Bagoes Widjanarko,1 Dyah Anantalia Widyastari,2 Martini Martini,3 Praba Ginandjar3

1Department of Health Education and Behavior Sciences, Faculty of Public Health, Diponegoro University, Semarang, Indonesia; 2Institute for Population and Social Research, Mahidol University, Salaya, Thailand; 3Department of Epidemiology, Faculty of Public Health, Diponegoro University, Semarang, Indonesia

Purpose: Detection of acid-fast bacilli in respiratory specimens serves as an initial pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) diagnosis. Laboratories are the essential and fundamental part of all health systems. This study aimed to describe how laboratory technicians perceived their own self and work. This included perceived self-efficacy, perceived role, perceived equipment availability, perceived procedures, perceived reward and job, and perceived benefit of health education, as well as level of knowledge and attitudes related to work performance of laboratory technicians.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional quantitative study involving 120 laboratory technicians conducted in Central Java. Interviews and observation were conducted to measure performance and work-related variables.
Results: Among 120 laboratory technicians, 43.3% showed fairly good performance. They complied with 50%–75% of all procedures, including sputum collection, laboratory tools utilization, sputum smearing, staining, smear examination, grading of results, and universal precaution practice. Perceived role, perceived self-efficacy, and knowledge of laboratory procedures were significantly correlated to performance, besides education and years of working as a laboratory technician. Perceived equipment availability was also significantly correlated to performance after the education variable was controlled.
Conclusion: Most of the laboratory technicians believed that they have an important role in TB patients’ treatment and should display proper self-efficacy in performing laboratory activities. The result may serve as a basic consideration to develop a policy for enhancing motivation of laboratory technicians in order to improve the TB control program.

Keywords: laboratory technicians, perceived role, perceived self-efficacy, perceived job, perceived reward, tuberculosis

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